South Korea Shares Tipped To Open In The Green

(RTTNews) - Ahead of Friday's holiday for Independence Day, the South Korea stock market had turned lower - one session after ending the two-day slide in which it had stumbled more than 40 points or 1.7 percent. The KOSPI now rests just above the 2,640-point plateau and now it's expected to open to the upside on Monday.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat, with support expected from the technology and oil companies. The European and U.S. markets were up and the Asian bourses figure to open in similar fashion.

The KOSPI finished modestly lower on Thursday following losses from the technology and chemical companies, while the financials and automobile producers offered support.

For the day, the index sank 9.93 points or 0.37 percent to finish at 2,642.36 after trading between 2,628.62 and 2,647.56. Volume was 484 million shares worth 12.5 trillion won. There were 545 decliners and 341 gainers.

Among the actives, Shinhan Financial strengthened 1.52 percent, while KB Financial jumped 1.93 percent, Hana Financial rallied 1.80 percent, Samsung Electronics rose 0.27 percent, Samsung SDI declined 1.18 percent, LG Electronics shed 0.42 percent, SK Hynix retreated 1.14 percent, Naver plunged 4.41 percent, LG Chem stumbled 1.48 percent, Lotte Chemical tanked 3.70 percent, S-Oil improved 0.79 percent, SK Innovation skidded 1.06 percent, POSCO dropped 1.37 percent, SK Telecom added 0.38 percent, KEPCO gained 1.22 percent, Hyundai Mobis perked 0.21 percent, Hyundai Motor accelerated 1.01 percent and Kia Motors surged 5.78 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is positive as the major averages opened flat on Friday but accelerated as the day progressed, sending the NASDAQ and S&P to record closing highs.

The Dow advanced 90.98 points or 0.23 percent to finish at 39,087.38, while the NASDAQ jumped 183.04 points or 1.14 percent to close at 16,274.94 and the S&P 500 rallied 40.81 points or 0.80 percent to end at 5,137.08. For the week, the NASDAQ shot up 1.7 percent and the S&P 500 rose 1.0 percent, but the Dow eased 0.1 percent.

The surge by the NASDAQ reflected substantial strength among computer hardware stocks following upbeat results from Dell (DELL), with the NYSE Arca Computer Hardware Index soaring to a record closing high.

In economic news, the Institute for Supply Management said manufacturing activity in the U.S. unexpectedly contracted at an accelerated rate in February. Also, the University of Michigan released revised data showing consumer sentiment unexpectedly deteriorated in February.

The soft data contributed to a downturn by treasury yields, which added to optimism about the Federal Reserve eventually cutting interest rates.

Oil prices rose to a four-month high on Friday, buoyed by reports that oil demand surged to a four-year high in 2023 and will hold near that level again this year. West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for April spiked $1.71 or 2.2 percent at $79.97 a barrel, the highest close since November 6, 2023.

Closer to home, South Korea will provide January figures for industrial production and retail sales later this morning. In December, industrial output was up 0.6 percent on month and 6.2 percent on year, while retail sales slipped 0.8 percent on month.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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